Page last updated at 12:58 GMT, Friday, 19 June 2009 13:58 UK

Ice lolly bid to save bitten ear

Wayne Morrison
Wayne Morrison bit off a piece of ear in the attack

Petrol station staff used ice lollies to try to save part of a man's ear after it was bitten off by a fellow customer, a court has heard.

A piece of Christopher Deans' ear was found on the floor of the Bypass Service Station in East Lothian after he was attacked by Wayne Morrison, 35.

Staff thought they might be able to preserve it until the piece of ear could be reattached by surgeons.

However, the plastic surgery proved to be unsuccessful.

Morrison pled guilty to severely injuring and permanently scarring Mr Deans, 24, in Haddington on 23 September last year.

He has to pay £2,000 in compensation to Mr Deans and was ordered to carry out 240 hours of community service.

The complainer was screaming, he was in considerable pain
Fiscal depute Aidan Higgins

Sheriff Frank Crowe described the incident, which happened at 0720 BST as the men were going to work, as "barbaric".

"Your behaviour was disgraceful, you acted out of all proportion," said the sheriff.

The court was told father-of-five Morrison had left his home that morning in a "raging temper" after a row with his wife.

Mr Deans, a farm worker, was buying cigarettes at the service station in Bypass Road but realised he was short of money and headed back out to his car.

"In leaving he brushed against the accused who was standing in the queue," said fiscal depute Aidan Higgins, prosecuting.

"Thinking that it was very slight contact he certainly didn't feel there was any need to apologise or mention it to the accused.

"As he got to the door of the service station shop, the accused had turned round and come after him.

"Just at the door the accused grabbed hold of (Mr Deans), he pushed him against the door, head-butted him in the middle of the forehead and having hold of the complainer he then bit into his left ear."

He said Mr Deans was screaming and was in "considerable pain".

'Considerable stress'

Morrison then rejoined the queue and paid before leaving the shop and driving off.

Police traced his vehicle registration to his home in Cockburnspath and he was arrested.

Mr Deans was taken to Edinburgh Royal Infirmary and later transferred to St John's Hospital in Livingston for plastic surgery, but attempts to reattach the missing piece of ear failed.

Mr Higgins said that the injury had caused Mr Deans "considerable embarrassment".

His outdoor job means Mr Deans also suffers pain in his ear during cold weather.

Vince Belmonte, defending, said his client had acted "completely out of character at a time he was under considerable stress".

Sheriff Crowe told Morrison: "You disfigured a man, that's a horrible thing.

"Mr Deans has got to live with that for the rest of his life.

"It would be very easy to send you to prison but that would have a devastating effect on your family."

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